Saturday, July 25, 2009

Eto'o is my hero'o

We are blogging about Street Soccer and Samuel Eto'o has relevance. Why? Because Street Soccer is about overcoming poverty/homelessness and it's about the world game we love and share.

Now, what's great about this link is that it refers to Thomsas N'kono, Cameroon goalkeeper in 1990 when Cameroon became the first African nation to "break through." Cameroon, known as the Indomitable Lions, made the quarterfinals, losing to England in penalties in an epic match. Roger Mila and company stole the world's imagination, including one American boy's from Virginia. 8 years later I found myself on scholarship to study a summer in Cameroon. It was the 1990 World Cup that drove my curiosity to get to that country one way or another. I played soccer there, of course, on the local team, and in some ways I never left West Africa.

So I am impartial . . . but I also know a great striker when I see one--as a former outside back. Inter have made a great deal for a uniquely motivated individual. Eto'o has been overlooked by media again and again as Barca and the world press prefer to focus on other players, perhaps more marketable ones. In Barca beside scoring goals, Eto'o dealt with racial violence during matches. Opposing crowds threw bananas at him and a couple times he had to walk off the pitch. He has preferred to focus on football rather than let the racists disturb or distract him. His indomitable psyche is a great example to the Street Soccer USA players, who must deal with stereotypes, judgments, social injustice, on a daily basis. We hit this message everyday, don't let others distract you from your goals. While I love to root against Inter and the hilarious Mourinho, I would cheer from the bottom of my heart if Eto'o, my hero'o, would lead inter to Champions league glory. Comments? agree or disagree?

No comments: